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Oyo to remove illegal structures, begins land billing system

By Rotimi Agboluaje, Ibadan
08 August 2022   |   2:43 am
The Oyo State Government has said it will serve traders and residents of Ibadan and its environs contravention notices for erecting illegal structures on flood plains, blocking waterways

Ibadan, Oyo State

The Oyo State Government has said it will serve traders and residents of Ibadan and its environs contravention notices for erecting illegal structures on flood plains, blocking waterways and buildings under high tension power lines.

Speaking with journalists in Ibadan last week, after a meeting with key stakeholders in the sector, the Commissioner for Lands, Housing and Urban Development, Emmanuel Olayiwola, decried the present state of physical planning, saying it has become an issue of concern to the government.

Olayiwola further lamented illegal development under power lines, saying some developments under high-tension cables are in deviance with the state’s physical planning law.

The commissioner said illegal development activities without adherence to planning standards in the state gave birth to slums.

He said the illegal developments, if not checked on time, would pose threat to residents.

He explained that the state government would embark on property auditing, enforcement of planning standards and adopting technological innovations.

Olayiwola also said the government has introduced a new land administration system and manages demand notices.

He said the billing system has been deployed to 11 local town planning offices in the Ibadan zone, for a test run, while the ministry is on the verge of eradicating manual invoice/bills.

“This exercise is to ensure a sustainable, organised and livable environment for citizens,” he said.

The commissioner, however, warned members of the public against the attack and abuse of government officials in the course of duty.

He also advised developers to obtain approval from the town planning offices in their various councils before embarking on any development.

He urged all residents to abide by the provisions of the Oyo State’s physical planning policies to achieve the developmental plans of the government.

He also urged the public to serve as watchdogs, by reporting any illegal activity around them. “Government officials cannot cover every area of the state, so when you see any illegal development/ structures in any place, inform the appropriate agency of government,” he said.

“They should ensure all government fees are paid accordingly. To achieve this, the government has acceded to the yearnings of the public by approving a revised tax regime for planning approvals.”

Olayiwola announced that the government has reviewed the mandatory tax clearance fee downward for the convenience of residents, which ranges from 20, 600 to N120,000. The commissioner said the state government would further strengthen orderly development that would promote socio-economic growth, safety and security of lives and properties, aesthetics and wellness of citizens and inhabitants of the state.

The meeting was attended by the SSA on Lands, Tilewa Folami; Chairman, Oyo State Board of Internal Revenue, Mr. Femi Awakan; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development, Mrs. Mofoluwake Adebiyi and the Directors of Town Planning in all 33 councils in the state.

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